Jokes Cemented in Reality

A take on dark humor and its danger on your digital footprint.

Cartoon credits to Childline, United Kingdom

Cartoon credits to Childline, United Kingdom


Humor is limited to humanity, no known species can practice nor experience it.  On a surface level, jokes seem superficial. Yet the bounds of humor is ambiguous, as it’s purely subjective. The lack of clarity has often left people wondering what’s acceptable, and what’s not.

People often question the credibility of dark humor. This topic of conversation is especially relevant in modern-day society, as words are documented for millions of eyes to look upon. What is said online lasts forever, the weight of words creating a permanent digital footprint.

America is known for its vast freedoms, one of them being freedom of speech. In technicality, people have the freedom to say whatever they please, unless it’s a direct threat. Written in the First Amendment, it’s stated:

 “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion…or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.”

However, this does not apply to private organizations. They have the authority to dictate whether or not an employee’s background

Examples of private organizations. Cartoon credits to Edutech for Teachers.

can affect their condition of work, and if it’s necessary to eliminate them because of that. This background includes past behavior, criminal record, and what someone may post online.

Some would say this practice is a suppression of speech, yet I would like to argue otherwise.

If theoretically, private organizations didn’t have the right to deny employment or fire people because of the First Amendment, it would enable the creation of an oppressive environment from the words posted. As a result, it would suppress other peoples’ freedom of speech. 

Take for example: someone actively making racist jokes or remarks can cause victims of the “punchlines” to be fearful. With a system that possesses no regulations, the sufferers would have to stay silent, ultimately leading to the loss of freedom of speech.

Ironically, regulations of the freedom of speech maximize the liberty of voices from citizens across the nation. Someone’s jokes can be the actuality of the world for another, and because of that, those seemingly jestering words can be cemented in reality. While there is free reign for dark humor, people must be aware of the lawful consequences that follow.


Tips to consider about your digital footprint. Credits to Kathleen Morris.